2018 World Series

Is there Really Home Field Advantage in the World Series?

The MLB World Series is very popular in mostly North America but is watched all around the world. Baseball is mainly played in the United States, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, and Japan. In the 2018 World Series, there was an average of 18.9 million viewers of each game; baseball brings in a massive audience because the sport is so well-known all around the world. People enjoy going out and watching their home team to root them on. Does a familiar stadium filled with home team fans help their team win, or is it just the luck of the game?

Cole Downs (’21), Ethan Wolff (’19), Alex Gianascoli (’19), Aedan Somers (’19), and Caleb Cho (’19) shared they do not regularly watch baseball, but they do watch the World Series. Prior to 2017, the World Series, home field was decided by the All-Star game. The rule was whichever conference won the All-Star game, the team representing that conference would get home field advantage first. The formatting for the MLB World Series is 2-3-2:  Games 1 and 2 are held at the team who won the All-Star Game, the next 3 are held at the opponent’s field, then the last 2 are held back at the team that hosted the first 2 games.

However, in 2017 and 2018, the MLB changed the rules that home field would be decided on whoever held the best record in the regular season between those two teams. During the 2018 season, the Boston Red Sox had a record of 108-54, and the Los Angeles Dodgers had a record of 92-71. So, the Red Sox got to host the World Series first. Having home field advantage may not seem like a big deal, but the winning percentage for the home team in the MLB World Series is 54 percent. In this particular World Series, the home team won 60 percent of the time, and if it wasn’t for the Dodgers’ fans rooting them on all throughout the 18th inning, then the Red Sox might have swept them. When Cole Downs (‘21) was asked if he thought the home team has a better chance to win that game in the World Series, he responded, “Yes, because the crowd is very influential.”

Often the home team will start chants of the team’s best player chanting “M-V-P”! This happens not just in the World Series but in the regular season as well.

Ethan Wolff (‘19) and Alex Gianascoli (‘19) both agreed that Mookie Betts should win the MVP of the World Series while Cole Downs (‘21) said that David Price should win the MVP; however, Steve Pearce ended up winning MVP. Although Steve Pearce won the MVP of the World Series, Aedan Somers (‘19), Ethan Wolff (‘19), Alex Gianascoli (‘19), and Cole Downs (‘21) predicted that Mookie Betts will win MVP out of the whole American League.

Aedan, Caleb, Ethan, Alex, and Cole are all fans of different teams, but all 5 predicted the Red Sox to win the 2018 World Series. In the end, the Boston Red Sox won in 5 games over the Los Angeles Dodgers. Although home field advantage is present throughout the World Series, the Boston Red Sox ended up winning the World Series while they were away in Los Angeles. So that makes you wonder, how much of a factor really is being the home team?


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